Protyre News


New indoor ice testing facilities to accelerate development of Falken winter tyres


Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd. opens one of the largest indoor ice tyre testing facilities in Japan

Falken Tyre’s parent company, Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd. has opened a new testing facility at its winter tyre development base, Nayoro Tyre Proving Ground in Hokkaido, Japan.
At approximately 3,000m2, the new Nayoro Indoor ICE Field (NICE) is one of the largest indoor on-ice tyre testing facilities in Japan. It features a 100m braking test track as well as a 30x30m handling test track. This indoor facility allows for high-precision on-ice testing regardless of weather conditions, enabling SRI brands such as Falken to improve the performance of winter tyres and accelerate the product development process.
“The addition of NICE to the Nayoro Tyre Proving Ground will further contribute towards the performance and competitiveness of Falken’s winter tyre offering,” says Markus Bögner, COO and President at Falken Tyre Europe GmbH. “SRI has some of the most rigorous testing facilities in the world, and this new indoor on-ice testing capability will allow for continuous development and winter product acceleration all year round.”
NICE complements the existing winter tyre testing facilities at Nayoro, which include a compacted snow test track. These have contributed to the testing, analysis and development of Falken’s successful winter tyres to date. The Nayoro Tyre Proving Ground is one of three owned by SRI in Japan. Alongside, the Okayama Tyre Proving Ground is used for comprehensive tyre performance testing, including high-speed, wet, dry and off-road testing, with the Asahikawa Tyre Proving Ground specialising in truck winter tyre testing.

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By Alistair Crumley
Alistair has 20 years’ experience in the motor industry and has previously worked for automotive oil and tyre manufacturers. Since joining Protyre, Alistair has been both Brand Manager and Category Manager for Mid-Range tyre brands, including; Falken and Sumitomo. He has spent over 9 years working to develop and promote the Falken brand in the UK and in doing so, he has gained vast amounts of technical knowledge and expertise.
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